Jets reportedly fretting Ryan Fitzpatrick will take less money elsewhere out of spite

The slow dance between Ryan Fitzpatrick and the New York Jets over a new contract continues to be as exciting as a pair of eighth graders with a balloon stuck between them and Stairway to Heaven blaring over the gym loudspeaker.

The last we heard was the Jets reportedly offered Fitzpatrick a three-year deal with $12 million guaranteed in the first year (and $6 million salaries the next two seasons). Here's a fun new wrinkle: Fitzpatrick might be willing to take less money as a backup somewhere else purely out of spite.

From Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News:

The nearly three-month stalemate has some folks on One Jets Drive wondering if Fitzpatrick will ever return to help make a playoff push for a team with an aging core.

Jets sources, including players, now believe that Fitzpatrick is amenable to spurning them on principle and taking less money to play elsewhere. They no longer think that Fitzpatrick's return is a fait accompli.

Like, where would Fitz go? The Broncos are still an option, what with an injured Mark Sanchez, a rookie in Paxton Lynch and the possibility of Trevor Siemian actually maybe becoming the starting quarterback.

He could join Rex Ryan and the Bills and battle the Jets twice a year while simultaneously giving Tyrod Taylor a run for his money as the starter and eliminating the fear of starting EJ Manuel.

Would Ryan Fitzpatrick take less money to play elsewhere out of principle? USATSI

Maybe the Patriots would like a guy who can come in and start hot for four games ...? These are just places he could see an actual run under center. Fitz would be a welcome addition to almost any roster as a top-flight backup. His intelligence (not sure if you heard but he went to Harvard) makes him malleable to most offensive schemes and systems, even if he's not physically the type of guy who will dominate.

Don't worry, though, Jets fans! Everyone is totally comfortable with the idea of Geno Smith helping the Jets win.

It would be pretty lovely if these two would just agree on a contract already.

CBS Sports Senior Writer

Will Brinson joined CBS Sports in 2010 and enters his seventh season covering the NFL for CBS. He previously wrote for FanHouse along with myriad other Internet sites. A North Carolina native who lives... Full Bio

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